Barracuda Networks acquires zero trust cybersecurity startup Fyde to protect remote employees as 'the pendulum isn't swinging back' to all in-office work
- Longtime cybersecurity company Barracuda Networks announced it has acquired the cloud security startup Fyde.
- Barracuda's CEO says the acquisition will help his company protect small and medium-sized companies, which must stay nimble as remote work evolves.
- Fyde will allow Barracuda's corporate customers to securely connect to their company web applications from anywhere, on any device.
- "This continues to evolve: Flexibility is an element of a hybrid workforce," says Barracuda CEO B.J. Jenkins.
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Longtime cybersecurity company Barracuda Networks has acquired cloud security startup Fyde, the companies announced on Wednesday.
For 17 years Barracuda has focused on providing cybersecurity for small and mid-size companies, while three-year-old Fyde, which is based in Silicon Valley and Portugal, is a "zero trust" cybersecurity company that allows remote employees to more easily connect to web applications securely from anywhere without tapping into a company's home network.
Barracuda says the acquisition will help it to serve small and mid-size enterprises as the timeline for returning to offices remains uncertain as COVID-19 endures. It declined to provide financial terms for the acquisition.
"We believe it will remain a hybrid world – and companies need to get more nimble," says CEO B.J. Jenkins. "The pendulum isn't swinging back" with a wholesale return to the office says Jenkins.
As remote work has gone on, employees have added new devices to their home offices, and more tools to their online work lives. Jenkins says Fyde will help employees connect to those apps from wherever they are, and whatever device they are on.
Fyde's zero trust approach dispenses with a traditional firewall and antivirus in favor of continual authentication of all users – even the CEO – so that there is "zero trust" that someone has a right to access systems and data.
That strategy is especially important as companies need to onboard or equip employees at home, Jenkins says. "Someone gets a new laptop, or buys the new iPhone and suddenly you have new devices accessing your work apps. As employees add devices, companies need to adapt from where they are."
Prolonged remote work without a clear or complete return to the office means security must be able to help expanding needs, according to Jenkins.
"This continues to evolve: Flexibility is an element of a hybrid workforce," he said. "Some people will want to come back to work on-premises. Some won't want to come back at all. Companies need to be ready for that."
Gartner agrees that companies like Fyde – which is considered a zero trust network asset (ZTNZ) company "improves the flexibility, agility, and scalability of application access enabling digital businesses to thrive without exposing internal applications directly to the internet, reducing risk of attack."
Fyde has raised $5.25 million in venture capital, according to PitchBook, which lists a valuation of $10 million. Barracuda is based in Silicon Valley, employs 1,600, and was bought by private equity behemoth Thoma Bravo through a $1.6 billion public-to-private leveraged buyout in 2018.
Fyde CEO Sinan Eren and other employees will join the larger company, per Eren: "We're excited about joining the Barracuda team."
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